05/28/2002 11:00PM

Fairmount track report


COLLINSVILLE, Ill. - Louis D. O'Brien has resigned, effective Wednesday, as president of the Illinois division of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association.

Jim Watkins is the new president, and his term runs through the fall of 2003. Watkins is a longtime horse owner here and an HBPA board member for the past 4 1/2 years. O'Brien will remain a member of the board of directors.

Watkins, 38, brings to the job experience as president of the Belleville School District Teacher's Union. He has called his first board meeting for Saturday and has plans for a general membership meeting on an as yet unspecified date in June.

* At the start of the day on May 19, trainer Leroy Hellman was off to a terrible beginnning at the meet, with only one win from 30 starters. But in the six racing days since, Hellman has sent out five winners, highlighted by Canyon de Oro's impressive allowance win Friday night.

Canyon de Oro made short work of a nonwinners-of-three allowance field, winning five lengths under John Woodley.